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Whole Life Insurance vs Term Insurance 

The primary reason we buy life insurance is for protection – it can provide financial back-up during emergencies when we pass on or become totally and permanently disabled1

Types of life insurance products

1. Term Insurance 

Provides you with protection coverage for a fixed period of time without any investment feature1.

2. Whole Life Insurance

Provides you with life-long protection. It is available as participating and non-participating policies2

What is term insurance and is it suitable for me?

Term insurance provide pure protection as it does not have any investment feature3. It pays out only upon death or total and permanent disability within a fixed period of time. Term insurance typically has no cash value unlike whole life insurance and do not have any investment risk as no money is invested. Although term insurance only provides coverage for a specific period of time, it may be renewable or convertible.

For instance, ManuProtect Term (II) allows you to choose between policy term 5 or 10 years and are automatically renewable4 to age 85, regardless of health condition.

Yearly renewable term plan customizable to your specific protection needs and budget

ManuProtect Term (II)

Yearly renewable term plan customizable to your specific protection needs and budget

It is suitable for those who only need protection coverage for a fixed period of time. For example, if you want to be covered until your youngest child completes university or is financially self-reliant.

What is whole life insurance and is it suitable for me?

Whole life insurance provides life-long protection2. It generally cost more than term insurance as part of the premium is invested to build up cash value. You must be prepared to commit for the long term as early termination may result in losses. It is available in different forms, such as participating and non-participating policies.

What is the difference between a participating and non-participating policy?

A participating5 insurance policy provides both guaranteed and non-guaranteed benefits, while a non-participating5 policy typically provides guaranteed benefits. Guaranteed benefit is the sum assured which is paid when the policy matures, you pass on or when you become totally and permanently disabled (if this benefit is provided) during the policy period. Non-guaranteed benefits may include bonuses and cash dividends which depend on how the participating fund’s investments are performing.

For example, LifeReady Plus (II) is a regular premium participating whole life insurance plan that provides a lump sum payout should the unforeseen event of death6, terminal illness6 or total and permanent disability6 happen. It comes with the option to enhance your protection up to 5X, till age 70 or 80. In addition, you may receive any declared non-guaranteed bonuses that may help your cash value grow. It also comes with financial flexibility7 which gives you the option to convert the cash value from your policy into annual payouts, over 10 years, with additional 5% interest.

Helps you plan for every stage of your life, with coverage that can be customised to your needs.

LifeReady Plus (II)

Helps you plan for every stage of your life, with coverage that can be customised to your needs.

Find out how to choose the right life insurance for you here and when should you get a life insurance here

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    4. Premiums will be based on the life insured’s age at point of renewal. Not available for Level and Convertible.


    6. Terms and conditions apply. Please refer to respective product summaries for more information.

    7. Option is only available after the enhanced protection expires at age 70 or 80, and can only be exercised once. Annual payout will result in coverage reduction and lower cash value when the policy matures. Please refer to the product summary for more details.


    Important Notes

    These insurance products are underwritten by Manulife (Singapore) Pte. Ltd. (Reg. No. 198002116D). This advertisement has not been reviewed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore. Buying a life insurance policy is a long-term commitment. There may be high costs involved if you terminate the policy early, and your policy's surrender value (if any) may be zero or less than the total premiums paid. Buying health insurance products that are unsuitable for you may affect your ability to finance your future healthcare needs.

    This article is for your information only and does not consider your specific investment objectives, financial situation or needs. It is not a contract of insurance and is not intended as an offer or recommendation to purchase the plan. You can find the full terms and conditions, details, and exclusions for the mentioned insurance product(s) in the policy contract.

    This policy is protected under the Policy Owners’ Protection Scheme which is administered by the Singapore Deposit Insurance Corporation (SDIC). Coverage for your policy is automatic and no further action is required from you. For more information on the types of benefits that are covered under the scheme as well as the limits of coverage, where applicable, please contact us or visit the LIA or SDIC websites ( or

    We recommend that you seek advice from a Manulife Financial Consultant or our Appointed Distributors, or visit any DBS/POSB Branch before making a commitment to purchase a policy.

    Information is correct as at 3 October 2022.

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